Cinnamon Cockatiel (Exploring the Unique Charm and Care of This Beautiful Bird Mutation)

Last Updated on December 25, 2023 by Ali Shahid

The Cinnamon Cockatiel is a fascinating variation of the well-known cockatiel species, showcasing a captivating silver-brown plumage ranging from warm tannish-gray to chocolate brown. Initially considered rare, this color mutation has become more prevalent and identifiable thanks to advancements in avian genetics. 

The distinctive coloration of the Cinnamon Cockatiel results from a recessive gene impacting the bird’s melanin pigment, replacing the usual grey or black tones with a pleasing cinnamon hue. As a pet, the Cinnamon Cockatiel is highly coveted for its amicable and sociable nature, making it an ideal choice for bird enthusiasts of all experience levels. 

Remarkably, cockatiels hold the second position among the most popular caged birds, trailing only the budgerigar. Their striking coloration and affectionate, playful personalities make Cinnamon Cockatiels a delightful addition to any household.

Whether you are a novice bird owner or a seasoned breeder, the Cinnamon Cockatiel provides a distinctive and enjoyable pet experience. Its subtly stunning coloration, coupled with its endearing personality, contributes to the growing appeal of Cinnamon Cockatiels among bird enthusiasts worldwide.

Cinnamon Cockatiel

Origin and Characteristics of the Cinnamon Cockatiel

The Cinnamon Cockatiel, scientifically known as Nymphicus hollandicus, is a captivating variant originating from the Grey Cockatiel, native to Australia. Its alluring color mutation stems from a genetic variation influencing melanin production, the pigment responsible for feather coloration. This unique trait manifests in a striking cinnamon hue, ranging from a light brown to a deep reddish-brown.

In their native Australia, Cinnamon Cockatiels inhabit diverse environments, including forests, woodlands, grasslands, and savannas. These social birds exhibit a communal lifestyle, residing in flocks and sustaining themselves on a varied diet of seeds, fruits, and insects.

The Cinnamon Cockatiel’s popularity as a pet bird is attributed to its amiable and sociable disposition, making it an excellent choice for bird enthusiasts of all skill levels.

Physical Characteristics of Cinnamon Cockatiel

The Cinnamon Cockatiel stands out as a captivating color mutation originating from the Grey Cockatiel, a species native to Australia. This unique and striking coloration is a consequence of a genetic variation influencing melanin production, the pigment responsible for feather color. The outcome is a remarkable cinnamon color spectrum, ranging from light brown to a deep reddish-brown.

Cinnamon Cockatiels exhibit a distinctive size, measuring around 12 inches (30 cm) and weighing between 3 to 4 ounces. Their notable coloration is attributed to a sex-linked recessive gene that alters the bird’s melanin pigment, substituting the typical grey or black shades with a warm cinnamon hue.

Variations of the Cinnamon Cockatiel

The Cinnamon Cockatiel exhibits various captivating variations arising from different combinations of genetic mutations. Two noteworthy examples are the Cinnamon Pearl Cockatiel and the Cinnamon Pied Cockatiel.

The Cinnamon Pearl Cockatiel is a stunning bird displaying a blend of cinnamon brown and yellow plumage. This variation results from the combination of the cinnamon mutation with the pearl or pearling mutation, which alters the pigment distribution in the feathers. It’s important to note that the Cinnamon Pearl Cockatiel is a result of intentional breeding efforts and does not occur naturally in the wild.

On the other hand, the Cinnamon Pied Cockatiel represents another striking variation resulting from the pairing of a pied and a cinnamon cockatiel. Their plumage showcases a delightful mix of cinnamon brown and yellow, with the pied pattern introducing a random distribution of these colors across the bird’s feathers. Similar to the Cinnamon Pearl Cockatiel, the Cinnamon Pied Cockatiel is a product of selective breeding and is not found in its natural habitat.

Behavior and Personality of the Cinnamon Cockatiel

Cockatiels, including the Cinnamon Cockatiel, are renowned for their affable, playful, and sociable dispositions. Their intelligence allows them to learn a variety of tricks, such as waving, whistling, and bell ringing, making them engaging companions over time. Despite being relatively quiet, these birds communicate predominantly through whistles and chirps.

Thriving on companionship, cockatiels, including the Cinnamon variety, enjoy interacting with their owners and forming strong bonds with them. Their loyalty is evident as they often follow their owners around, seeking attention. 

The Cinnamon Cockatiel, arising from a genetic mutation in captive-bred birds, exhibits behavior similar to other cockatiels. A key indicator of their mood is the position of their crest feathers — straight up when startled, close to the head when stressed or afraid, and slightly held back when content and relaxed.

Cockatiels, including the Cinnamon variant, employ various gestures for communication. Tail wagging signifies happiness, walking towards you with the head up denotes contentment, and placing the head down near you signals a desire for head scratches. 

Signs of aggression include flashing or dilating pupils, ruffling feathers, fanning tail feathers, and adopting an aggressive posture while walking towards you. Defensive behaviors may involve flipping upside-down with spread wings or snapping in your direction with their beak. Hissing is another indicator of aggression or discomfort.

Active and playful, Cinnamon Cockatiels require mental stimulation and enrichment to prevent boredom and destructive behavior. While they thrive in pairs for social interaction, sufficient attention and interaction with their owner can ensure their contentment when kept alone.

Breeding Cinnamon Cockatiel

Successfully breeding Cinnamon Cockatiels involves a deep understanding of their genetics and creating the right conditions for effective mating. These unique birds, a color variation of the common Grey Cockatiel, exhibit a striking cinnamon hue in their feathers, ranging from a light brown to a deep reddish-brown. This distinctive coloring arises from a genetic variance affecting the production of melanin, the pigment responsible for feather coloration.

To initiate the breeding process, it’s crucial to carefully choose a Cinnamon Cockatiel female and a male Cockatiel that either displays the cinnamon coloration or carries the trait (“split to”) on at least one of his X chromosomes.

The optimal breeding age for Cockatiels falls between 2 and 5 years. Males typically reach breeding maturity at 12-15 months, while females become ready at around a year and a half. Female fertility spans up to 8-10 years, and males remain fertile until 12-14 years.

Creating the right environment is paramount for successful breeding. Providing ample space, such as an aviary or spacious cage, encourages interaction between the birds. A well-balanced diet is also essential for reproductive success. Typically, Cockatiels breed during spring and early autumn when days are longer and the weather is mild. To stimulate breeding, replicate their natural habitat conditions.

Although Cockatiels can breed on shorter days, a minimum of 14 hours of light is needed for optimal results. They lay one egg every other day until a clutch of about 5 eggs is complete. The incubation period ranges from 17 to 21 days.

Caring for a Cinnamon Cockatiel

1. Diet

Maintaining a well-rounded diet is crucial for Cinnamon Cockatiels’ well-being, providing them with a clean and engaging environment and ensuring regular health check-ups.

2. Habitat Care and Grooming:

For optimal health, it’s essential to keep the environment clean. Positioning food and water dishes above perches prevents contamination from droppings, and these should be thoroughly cleaned with each refill. Spot cleaning of the cage and accessories 2-3 times weekly, or as needed, is recommended, with a more thorough monthly (preferably weekly) cleaning using bird-safe cleaning agents. To assist in grooming, misting your cockatiel twice a week with lukewarm water helps them stay tidy.

3. Health Maintenance:

Regular veterinary check-ups are essential for cockatiels. Annual visits allow for physical examinations, grooming (such as nail or wing trims when necessary), and laboratory tests, including blood and stool analysis, ensuring the overall health of your bird.

4. Enrichment and Mental Stimulation:

Happiness for cockatiels comes from being entertained. Daily outings from their cage and access to a TV or radio can prevent boredom. Since cockatiels enjoy chewing, offering bird-safe toys distracts them from potentially destructive chewing around the house. Cinnamon sticks, with their various textures and flavors, can serve as intriguing toys but should be given under supervision to avoid any choking hazards.

Cinnamon Cockatiel for Sale and Price

The cost of a Cinnamon Cockatiel typically falls within the range of $75 to $100, although variables such as age, health, and breeder pricing can influence the final price. Some sources suggest a broader range, spanning from $130 to $160 and even reaching up to $300 to $400. It’s essential to note that these prices pertain to the bird alone, and additional expenses for supplies and care should be taken into account.

In the United States, purchasing Cinnamon Cockatiels is possible through various outlets. Online platforms like Birds Now and Parrot Stars feature these birds for sale, while physical pet stores and specialized bird establishments, such as Omar’s Exotic Birds, also offer Cockatiels. However, it is advisable to acquire these birds from reputable breeders or rescue organizations to ensure the bird’s health and lineage.

When considering the purchase of a Cinnamon Cockatiel, several factors should be weighed:

1. Health: Ensure the bird displays signs of good health, including bright eyes, clean feathers, and active behavior.

2. Age and Socialization: It’s advisable to acquire a young bird or one that has been regularly handled and socialized. Birds lacking proper socialization may pose challenges in terms of taming.

3. Breeder Reputation: Opt for a reputable breeder or rescue organization, even if the price is higher than that of pet shops. Typically, birds from reputable sources are healthier and more amicable.

4. Long-term Commitment: Cockatiels have a lifespan of over two decades with proper care. Owning one necessitates a substantial long-term commitment involving proper housing, nutrition, and healthcare.

5. Additional Costs: Beyond the initial bird cost, factor in expenses for cages, toys, food, and veterinary care. The overall lifetime cost for a cockatiel can range from $8,730 to $15,350.

6. Compatibility: Cockatiels are social creatures that can form strong bonds with their owners. They generally get along well with family members, neighbors, and strangers.

7. Bird’s Personality: While Cockatiels are known for their friendly and affectionate nature, inadequate socialization and training can lead to territorial and aggressive behavior.

Owning a pet bird is a substantial responsibility, demanding time, effort, and dedication. It’s crucial to carefully consider all these factors before making a decision.


The Cinnamon Cockatiel stands out as a captivating variation within the popular cockatiel species, distinguished by its enchanting silver-brown plumage. Originating from Australia, this bird’s unique coloration arises from a genetic mutation affecting its melanin pigment. Noteworthy variations, such as the Cinnamon Pearl Cockatiel and the Cinnamon Pied Cockatiel, add further charm to this breed.

Renowned for their friendly, playful, and sociable nature, Cinnamon Cockatiels prove to be intelligent companions capable of learning tricks and forming strong bonds with their owners. Their behaviors and gestures serve as indicators of mood or needs, enhancing the overall engagement of having them as pets.

Ensuring the well-being of a Cinnamon Cockatiel involves providing a balanced diet, maintaining a clean and stimulating environment, and conducting routine health checks. Incorporating cinnamon into their diet can offer various health benefits, and the provision of toys, including the use of cinnamon sticks, is essential for their mental stimulation.

While the cost of a Cinnamon Cockatiel may vary, it is imperative to consider the enduring commitment and additional costs associated with their care. When acquiring a Cinnamon Cockatiel, it is advisable to choose reputable breeders or rescue organizations to ensure the bird’s health and lineage.


  • Ali Shahid

    Ali Shahid is a veterinarian by profession and an animal lover. He loves to give expert opinions about different animals. He has worked in top organization of birds like Bigbird Feed and Poultry Research institute. He loves birds, especially parrots and has great experience in different parrot farms.

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